Namco Museum[a] is a series of video game compilations developed and published by Bandai Namco Entertainment for home video game consoles. The first title in the series, Namco Museum Vol. 1, was released for the PlayStation in 1995. Entries in the series have been released for multiple platforms, including the Game Boy Advance, PlayStation 2, PlayStation Portable, Nintendo DS and Xbox 360. the latest being Namco Museum Archives Vol. 2, released in 2020.
The Namco Museum name was originally used for a chain of retail stores in the 1980s, which sold merchandise based on Namco video games and characters. The compilations include video games developed by Namco for both arcade hardware and home game systems, including the Family Computer and Sega Genesis. Some iterations use software emulation for the games, while others instead reprogram them from scratch. The collections typically include interchangeable game settings, online leaderboards or unlockable extras, such as games or promotional material. The original PlayStation series, with the exception of Namco Museum Encore, instead placed the player in a virtual museum that housed the individual games.
Six Namco Museum volumes were released for the PlayStation from 1995 to 1998, including one (Namco Museum Encore) that was released only in Japan. When Namco unveiled Volume 5 at the November 1996 PlayStation Expo, it was announced that it would be the final volume in the series, hence the sixth volume's title, "Encore". The first five volumes pose a 3D virtual museum that players are able to walk around in, with each game being stored in an "exhibit" room. In these museums, players can view conceptual artwork, marketing material, arcade system boards, and other material relating to the included games. Encore replaces the museum with a standard menu system. The means by which Namco recreated the games for the PlayStation hardware is unclear; the arcade game conversions contain pieces of the original game data but none of the original source code, suggesting they are object-level recreations.
Namco Museum 64 for Nintendo 64 and Namco Museum for Dreamcast and Game Boy Advance are the first compilations in the series to omit a virtual museum. The GBA version was released worldwide, while other versions were exclusive to North America, and was a launch title for the system in North America. The following games, originally featured in Namco Museum Vol. 1 and Namco Museum Vol. 3 for the PlayStation, are included:
This title was released on the PlayStation Portable in 2005. It contains over twenty of Namco's games such as Pac-Man (1980) and Galaga (1981). In addition, new "Arrangement" variants are available for Pac-Man, Galaga, New Rally-X (1981) and Dig Dug (1982), which have updated gameplay, graphics and can be played in a versus or co-operative mode using the PSP's ad hoc feature. Game Sharing, a feature that had not yet been used on the PSP, was introduced in this game. This allowed others PSPs in the area to download the first few levels of some of the games.
The Arrangement games are the same as they were on Namco Museum Battle Collection for PSP, although New Rally-X Arrangement is not included in this compilation. Additionally, on all games, the original 2-player modes from the original arcade versions (where applicable) do not appear here; all games are one-player only. The Xbox Live Arcade games do not have multiplayer either with the exception of Mr. Driller Online's online mode. The Xbox Live Arcade games can only be played when the disc is inside the system. The games must be downloaded from Xbox Live Marketplace for their regular prices in order for the games to be retained in the system's game library.
Namco Museum Archives Vol. 1 and Namco Museum Archives Vol. 2 were both released on June 18, 2020 for the Xbox One, PlayStation 4, Nintendo Switch, and Steam outside of Japan. Developed by M2 and B.B. Studio. The two volumes are localized versions of the Japanese compilation Namcot Collection, featuring Namco-published games for the Nintendo Entertainment System and Family Computer. Vol. 1 contains an 8-bit demake of Pac-Man Championship Edition, and Vol. 2 contains a homebrew conversion of Gaplus.
The four reviewers of Electronic Gaming Monthly gave Volume 1 an 8.125 out of 10, citing the excellent quality of the emulation and the interesting virtual museum content. Mark Lefebvre summarized that "Namco has given gamers what they've always been asking for: old titles." Next Generation likewise complimented the emulation quality and the virtual museum, and concluded that for those interested in retro compilations, "this is as good as this sort of thing gets." They scored it four out of five stars. Maximum gave it three out of five stars, reasoning that "On the one hand, this is a collection of six indisputably classic games, three of which rank among the most influential titles in the history of videogames. On the other hand, all the games on the disk are over ten years old, and influential or not, they're definitely well past their sell by date. Pole Position may have revolutionised the racing genre in 1982, but would you really choose to play it over Ridge Racer Revolution in 1996?" While GamePro found that all of the games save ToyPop remained great fun, the reviewer criticized the absence of the voice samples from Pole Position and compared the 3D museum unfavorably to the bonus content in Williams Arcade's Greatest Hits. He concluded the compilation to be worth renting at the least, and a must-have for retro gaming fans.
Volume 4 saw a particularly steep decline in the series' critical standing, with most critics agreeing that of the five games included, only Ordyne and Assault were at all worthwhile. Gerstmann gave it a 4.5 out of 10, and said the collection "is just plain depressing. It contains five games, and most of them are little known games that were little known for a reason." Electronic Gaming Monthly's review team gave it a 5.75 out of 10. The team was evenly split: Shawn Smith and Crispin Boyer, each voting a 6.5 out of 10, found the interesting museum content and the two or three enjoyable games make the collection worthwhile, while Dan Hsu and Sushi-X both gave it a 5.0 and said it was a disappointment compared to the earlier volumes. Both Gerstmann and GamePro commented that the first three volumes of Namco Museum had exhausted the series concept and Namco's backlog of genuine classics, and that Namco should have let the series end with volume 3.
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The original five PS1 games feature many extra forms of content, and are navigated like a true "museum". Each game is accessed through an exhibit hall, with arcade artwork and other memorabilia on display; the hallway leads to a decorated room for each respective game. Future installments (including Namco Museum Encore) dropped the museum content entirely, instead solely focusing on the included games. Each game also features a 3D animated intro, where Pac-Man travels throughout the different included games' locations.
The downloadable version of Namcot Collection is free, but only includes one game - Wagyan Land (1989). Other games can be purchased individually for roughly $3 USD; among these games are Pac-Man, Pac-Land, and Family Pinball. If ten games are purchased, the player will unlock the homebrew Famicom port of Pac-Man Championship Edition.
Over in Japan, the digital Namcot Collection takes the form of a free-to-download base game, which includes Wagyan Land and can be expanded by purchasing new titles individually. Currently ten titles are available, and a total of 20 more will arrive in August and October.
In Japan, the collection was released exclusively for the Switch as Namcot Collection, referring to Namco's console game division that was active between 1984-95. It used a similar model to Capcom Arcade Stadium; it was released as a free download with one game included, Wagyan Land, with additional games available to purchase individually or in bundles. A physical version was also released which included the first set of downloadable games.
Won't be downloading anything after Nintendo put a 30 day block on my switch and all it's connected accounts due to suspicious activity. By suspicious they mean buying Fe on the Russian eshop and then trying to buy Flipping Death on the South African eshop. Even though I've frequently bought from multiple regions in quick succession before. Absolute refusal to take off the 30 day block and no further explanation offered. Can use pre paid eshop vouchers or paypal, but that's no good when you can only buy from the eshop region which matches your paypal region, in my case the UK, which isn't ideal when UK games are often 20-50% more expensive than in other regions. Sh*t show!
The game features a robust amount of history of the games presented and memorabilia and bonuses in a large museum (hence the name) and features emulations of the games using JAMMA emulation. Some games look a bit different from their actual arcade counterparts due to the limited resolution of the PlayStation, like Pac-Man and Galaga. Some games also sound different compared to their arcade counterparts, such as Pac-Man sound effects (Pac-Dots, Power Pellet, etc.) and the music of Toy Pop. 781b155fdc